Dear General Rossum: Week VII

“Dear General Rossum,

I’ve tried every online tutorial and instructions, but I just can’t figure out how to fold a fitted sheet flat. Any tips?


Flustered Folder in Frankfort”

Dear Flustered Folder,

Give up now and retain your sanity. In the 60’s we put our best minds on figuring it out. By the time the project was cancelled we had to seal up the compound to keep the lunatics we’d created from getting out. It is a mystery of the universe only to be solved at the pinnacle of human evolution, which is just something you and I have to learn to live with.

Or ask your wife. She probably knows.



“Dear General Rossum,

My husband recently bought our son a Playbox 180, despite my telling him not to. I didn’t want it in the house because I knew our son would start ignoring his schoolwork and chores, just like he’s done. I don’t want to take it away because he already thinks of me as the mean parent, but I need to get him to focus on what’s important. What should I do?


Mean Mom of Muskwell”

Dear Mean Mom,

To start, there’s nothing wrong about being seen as the mean parent. My wife is ruthless with our daughters, and they’ve got a great relationship. I have to ask my daughters to clean their dishes, but my wife gets it done with a cough and an eyebrow twitch. I wish I could be as harsh as her, but I’m just too big a softy.

However, if you want to get your son to stop playing while still seeming nice, you need to make it seem like it’s his decision to stop playing. Do some research and find the most terrifying, pants-soiling game on the market. Then give it to him as a present, “just because.” In no time he’ll be too scared to be even in the same room as the thing, and if he isn’t gaming, he might as well get some nice, safe homework done. If you’re lucky, he’ll start associating all video games with the one you get him, and you’ll ruin video games for him forever. You can’t hope for much more.



“Dear General Rossum” is a fictional weekly advice column written by Peter Williams.

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